February 21, 2008:

That one was broken-hearted. She was devastated with pain, seething with fury, triumphant to find a vulnerable outlet for her need to lash out. So she hurt me, in misplaced anger, and it felt good to her, and she never spoke to me again.

For a long time I was saddened to lose that friendship. Another loss, in a period where all was loss. When I could have used a friend who was loyal.

Later those feelings evolved into a certain nontrivial contempt. It was a fucked-up thing she did. It wasn't nice, it was uncalled-for, it wasn't loyal.

It was human.

It was egregiously hurtful, and that was the point. She was in pain, she shared it: that's what people do. We're wired that way.

So that there is a real-world sense in which depression actually is contagious. Not the underlying neurochemical misregulation. But via the triggering behaviors which set everyone off — everyone who's prepared.